What do you think the offensive line is capable of this season after returning all five starters?
"A lot. This is one of the first times that we've had a starting five come back for a season, so we've played together. Continue to build that cohesiveness in camp. We're really excited. We expect to do really good things and that's what we need to do for Deshaun (Watson) and the rest of this team."
How important is your relationship with QB Deshaun Watson and how much does that communication help when you're on the field?
"A lot. That relationship helps a ton and that goes back to his rookie year. We roomed together in The Greenbrier and just we've built on it every year. Like you said, he sees things, I see things. I can turn around and tell him. We trust each other and that trust, that bond, is huge and it really helps us, especially in games."
Where have you seen DE Charles Omenihu take a step forward in his second season?
"Yeah, he's doing well. I really like what he's doing in the run game, too, especially. Obviously, he can pass rush. He's got that good length. He gets that stab into you and it's a tough move to go against. For a lot of guys, the biggest jump in the NFL is from that first to second year, so I'm excited to see what he does this year."
Which specific piece of equipment did you borrow from the weight room during quarantine and why was it important?
"I like the sled. That was one of the biggest things. It's really good work for the quads, the legs and then you can – it's good o-line work, right? You put weight on it, it's like a drive block. I think it's one of the best conditioning you can do. It's hard to get in football shape unless you're playing football, but it kind of emulates a block. Those short bursts against some big weight, really helps out."
Is the sled what you borrowed from the team weight room and where did you do it?
"Yeah. Just right in my front lawn. I don't really have got much of a [backyard]. I did it in my front lawn, man. The neighbors were giving me some looks. We had a couple walking a dog stop, like, 'what are you doing? You play ball?' I was like, 'yeah, I play ball.' 'Who for?' 'The Texans.' They were like, 'all right, keep grinding.' But yeah, it was pretty funny. I got some looks."
How many times were you using the sled in the front yard and why did you decide to do that particular work in your front lawn?
"Well, I don't have a backyard – I mean, my backyard is all concrete, so I couldn't really do it back there. The work doesn't stop whether the gyms are shut down, which is a wild situation, we all know. You've got to find a way to do it and like I said, I really like that just because it kind of emulates a football play. Again, it's tough to get in football shape without actually playing football, especially as an o-lineman, so that kind of emulates a drive block and try to do that as much as possible."
How will the cohesion of returning all five starters help in pre-snap reads against defenses?
"It's going to help a ton. Like I said, we've played together. Now with the o-line it's all about cohesion, kind of that non-verbal cues, getting inside each other's heads because we've had that and worked it in real life. We've got to keep doing that, not only in practice, but in game situations. It's nice having returning starters, especially with Duke (Johnson) and David Johnson in the backfield. We're really excited to get going."
T Laremy Tunsil was penalized for several false starts last season because of his timing on the snap count. Is that something he needs to clean up or the entire unit?
"It's all of us. It's never one person, no matter what it is. It's a group effort. You've got five guys out there. You've got half the offense and it really is – it's never on one of us. Obviously, he's quick and he's athletic and he's going to do what he does. We're not worried about him."
Are the false starts a matter of getting the whole operation in sync or is it a timing disparity between the other four offensive lineman?
"Like I said, it's on all five of us. We work in practice and then you know, take that over to the game and get it right."
Can you talk about how much T Laremy Tunsil helped the offensive line last season? Also, what are you most looking forward to in your second season with him?
"I'm very excited. The tape doesn't lie. We always say that in football, and you watch the tape and he's dominating. We're excited to have him here for a long time. I'm excited to play with him and see what this o-line can do."
Where do you feel like you've grown individually as a center and what are some things you want to continue to work on?
"Yeah, I think just knowledge of the game. The NFL, it's always changing. There's always new blitzes every year, every week. Continue to file under d-coordinators and everything, and just keep really growing the mental aspect of the game. And then week by week – I really take it day-by-day. You watch the practice film. We're trying to focus one thing on the run the next day, one thing on the pass to get better from the previous day. You kind of just let to build and get a little bit better each day and build on that."
Does being under a long-term contract give you a different level of comfort and confidence?
"Yeah, absolutely. You focus on football. Even with or without that, as long as you focus on the game, take it one day at a time, one practice at a time and then you play well in the game, that stuff usually takes care of itself. I'm very, very happy to be here for a long time in this organization."
Can you talk about playing a second season with T Laremy Tunsil and what you see firsthand from him? Also, can you talk about what you have seen from G/T Tytus Howard in his second NFL season?
"Laremy, like I said, his tape, his footwork, his hands – it's funny because when you watch other people, they find a way to get the job done, but it might not look as pretty. With Laremy, he's always in the right position and he just does things the right way. With Tytus, again that jump from year one to year two is always so big. People usually make the biggest leap that year and he's a mauler, man. He loves to get after people. He loves the game. He loves to throw people around. He's got that natural playing strength on the field. So we're really excited to have those two lock down the ends."
QB Deshaun Watson talked about how Offensive Coordinator / Quarterbacks Coach Tim Kelly taking over play-calling duties can help communication within the offense. Does that also apply to the offensive line?
"No, absolutely. Tim helped me my rookie year a lot when he was an assistant coach, learning the offense and whatnot. I think that previous relationship and now that he's in that OC position has really helped, like what you said, that communication aspect of it. The time he puts in and his knowledge of the game is – I mean, it's crazy. He remembers specific plays from years ago. The way he teaches is so special because not only is he smart about the game, but he knows how you see it, too – how the player sees it. He's really good with communication, that open door policy, and I think it's going to help us a ton."
What has stood out to you about RB David Johnson so far?
"He's a special back. There's no doubt about it. He's so big, but he finds a hole and he hits it hard and he finds a way to somehow to get skinny through that hole and burst out. We're very excited to have him behind us and block for him and finish and let him really just do his thing back there."